About This Blog

I really like theatre, and I like writing and talking about it.

This blog is mostly about my relationship with theatre, the moments that make me fall in love with this art form, and the times when we don't always get along.

I'll be writing about things that I like, that I think are good and interesting and want to share. I will probably also write about things that I don't quite get, or think are wierd. I may also write about things that aren't theatre, strictly speaking, because it's my blog and I can.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

I Have Seen the National Theatre's Frankenstein, and It Was Awesome

National Theatre Live: Frankenstein
I went to see this last night at Graumann's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, and I'm so glad I did. It was such a great production; well-acted, with some great pieces of stagecraft, and interesting transitions that made the movement of the show flow really well.

The play took the interesting perspective of following the story from the Creature's point of view (the book follows Frankenstein, and then the Creature has a chapter of "this is what I was doing that whole time"), which will be a huge change for people who are only familiar with the classic film.

Also, the Creature's ability to learn and speak may come as a surprise to some viewers, as well. The play contains several riveting scenes of intelligent discussions of morality, the nature of the human soul, and love, to name a few.

The show started with few behind-the-scenes clips and interviews (apparently a documentary is being made; I'll definitely be wanting that when it comes out). The actors said some really interesting things about how they created their characters; Cumberbatch studied stroke victims and people learning to re-use limbs, Miller watched his two-year-old child.

One thing that was a bit odd was that we got the opposite cast from the one we were expecting: Benedict Cumberbatch played the Creature that night, and Jonny Lee Miller was Victor Frankenstein. That was fine with me, I was absolutely thrilled with the performance I saw. I was just expecting it to be the other way around, so I was a little confused for a minute.

Most theaters have added additional showings, and the screening of the reverse cast is coming next week, so find out if its playing near you. You'll be glad you caught it.

The Steam Train- one of the brilliant bits of stagecraft in Frankenstein (all images credited to the National Theatre of London)

The Creature is born flailing into the world to discover alone how his mind and body works.

A note about going to Graumann's Chinese Theatre- this was my first time seeing a movie there, actually. I usually try to avoid that area due to the tourist crowding and creepy costumed street people. I discovered it's not a good idea to wear high heels there; that's where the handprints in the cement are, and I kept falling in the holes!

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